TCCDM Pulls One Out..."Zerfas" - Zerfas (1973 - Rei 2022)

"Zerfas" - Zerfas (1973 - Rei 2022)

     Zerfas, from Indianapolis, can be found in The Acid Archives and hits the mind-melding sweet spot.  Their self-titled, one-and-done album is another biscuit to add to the growing list of lost gems.  The square has everything I'm looking for to satisfy my psychedelic palette.  The music is a mix of psych rock and pop-psych that occasionally makes peace with the prog brush.  Each song feels carefully crafted.  The organ and guitars play nice and the excellent vocals and lyrics are pleasing to the ear.  You almost forget the band was mostly teenagers.  There are more than just hints of late Beatles influences but Zerfas doesn't try to copy so much as take it further.  I mean that in the most complimentary way.  

The studio trickery on this album is clever and unexpected.  Looping, panning, weird modulations, backward shenanigans, and other tricks are used, but the effects are not employed for cheap thrills.  Everything feels necessary.  Nothing forced.  Nothing pushy.  The opening track is a little atypical of the other Zerfas tracks, however.  The song rocks gnarly and has an almost proto-punk ka-ching.  And it's terrific, but many find it out of place.  I luv it!  Zerfas gives us a wonderful psych-square ambitious in its presentation.  And yes, they might have been a wee bit late to the lysergic party, but they're still the kind of guest you hope show up before the first rush.

"Zerfas" - Zerfas (back)

Favorites include:
"Fool's Parade"
"The Piper"
"You Never Win"

Original pressings are extremely rare and can command four figures.  My copy is an unofficial reissue released on Cosmic Rock.  The record has a little crackling at the very beginning of side two.  Not much, but enough to annoy.  I spin-cleaned it a few times and it did help some, but whaddygonnado?  Other than that, the square sounds great.  

Cosmic Rock label

Cat #

Barcode: 7427252014549

"Fool's Parade" / "The Piper" - Zerfas (1973)

A1  "You Never Win" 5:14
A2  "The Sweetest Part" 3:37
A3  "I Don't Understand" 5:20
A4  "I Need It Higher" 4:48
B1  "Stony Wellitz" 6:30
B2  "Hope" 7:44
B3  "Fool's Parade" 4:22
B4  "The Piper" 4:16

David Zerfas - drums, percussionist, vocals 
Herman Zerfas - keyboards, vocals
Mark Tribby - guitar, bass, vocals
Steve Newbold - bass, guitars, vocals

Good stuff.

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